22 Apr 2009

Pacific employment scheme to continue

6:39 am on 22 April 2009

Immigration Minister Jonathan Coleman says the Government will continue the Recognised Seasonal Employer scheme, but would like to lift the return rate of Pacific Islanders.

The scheme aims to help fruit growers overcome labour shortages by allowing them to hire workers from the Pacific Islands. It is now in its second year.

After visiting orchardists in Hawke's Bay who are RSE employers, Dr Coleman said the national average return rate of Pacific Island workers this year was 70%.

He said the key to future success of the RSE scheme is good care and support for the workers while they are in New Zealand.